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Whole-Body Scans Diagnose Stage of Colorectal Cancer

Preliminary research shows viability of PET/CT colonography with optical colonoscopy

TUESDAY, Dec. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Whole-body positron emission tomography (PET) and computed tomography (CT) scans may be a viable option for diagnosing colorectal cancer stage, according to preliminary research published in the Dec. 6 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Patrick Veit-Haibach, M.D., of University Hospital Essen in Germany, and colleagues compared the diagnostic accuracy of whole-body PET/CT, conventional CT staging alone and CT followed by PET (CT + PET) in 47 colorectal cancer patients with 50 lesions.

The researchers found that PET/CT colonography correctly determined stage in 37 (74 percent) of the lesions compared to 26 (52 percent) for CT alone and 32 (64 percent) for CT + PET.

"This preliminary report suggests that PET/CT colonography may be at least equivalent to CT + PET with respect to tumor staging in patients with colorectal cancer," the authors conclude. "Because an all-in-one staging modality has to offer both accurate TNM staging of the tumor in question and information on potentially present synchronous tumors, PET/CT colonography in conjunction with optical colonoscopy may be suitable for whole-body all-in-one tumor staging in patients with colorectal cancer."

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